Bill’s Donuts: Centerville shop to be profiled in book

The oft-praised Bill’s Donut Shop will be the subject of a book to help commemorate more than 55 years of sweet confections and family memories.

“We want this book to feature our customers,” a notice about the book in the doughnut shop says. “Tell us how you were first introduced to Bill’s and all the memories and traditions you have created since then.”

Customers with Bill’s stories are asked to leave their contact information with co-owners Jim Elam or Lisa Elam Tucker. Bill’s Donuts is located at 268 N. Main St. (Ohio 48) in Centerville.

Jim Elam said a customer is putting together the book, in part because some of the personal stories are compelling.

One customer used to ride his horse to the shop when it first opened in 1960 in downtown Dayton, Elam said. Others have met their future spouses in one of the doughnut shop’s booths, or chose Bill’s as the place to propose marriage.

Bill’s Donut Shop moved from its original downtown Dayton location to Centerville in 1967. In the 1970s, there were several Bill’s locations in the Dayton area, including Vandalia, Kettering and Huber Heights. The shop moved to its current location on North Main Street in 1979.

Bill’s has won wide acclaim. It was also the only doughnut shop in Ohio to be included in Saveur magazine’s March 2013 story entitled “The World’s Best Donuts: The 50 Finest Donut Shops in America.” A month later, USA Today named Bill’s one of the “10 Great Places to Get Doughnuts” in the U.S.

In April 2015, Bill’s Donut Shop was named one of the “33 Best Donut Shops in America” by the web site Thrillist.com. It was the only doughnut shop in Ohio to be included in the “best-in-the-U.S.” list. The web site said Bill’s “captures the essence of the original, especially when you bite into their incredible apple spice, sour cream, white-iced jelly, and famous pretzel donuts.”

And in June 2015, a food blog on HuffingtonPost.com identified the devil’s food doughnut at Bill’s as one of the “Dozen Best Donuts in America,” proclaiming that it “begged to be dunked in chocolate.”

Bill’s Donuts is open 24 hours a day. For more information, check out the Bill’s Donut Shop Facebook page or call (937) 433-0002.

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